cluttering the net since 2001


Saturday, Feb. 07, 2004
When I heard the news of Carlie.....I was on my way to work, I pulled over and sat there and cried. My own son is 11 and when I woke that morning I was in the shower thinking about Carlie's mother realizing that she probably never slept yet, wondering...and then the news. It hit home. I sat my own son down and showed him Carlie's story and spoke to him at great length and I hope many other parents do the same thing. Sarasota is not far, not far from my front door, and that incident is not far from anyone's door. A 3 minute walk, most people said she should not have been alone, and I agree, but how many of us parents of a 11 year old allow them to walk through the mall to get a drink alone, or walk down the street 3 doors down to go to a friends house, how many of us become complacent and yet remember to tell our kids not to talk to strangers but then don't educate them to be wary of a stranger who walks up and perhaps says "your mother's been in a bad car accident, come with me we have to go to the hospital" or perhaps "your house is on fire the fire trucks are there c'mon lets hurry". We never get specific. I spoke to my son's father because he's always been more lenient with what he thought was "acceptable" for our son, I asked him pointblank "Is it acceptable that our son walks across the street to get ice cream alone?" "Is is acceptable that he rides his bike to his friends house the next block over?" "Is it acceptable that he walk through the mall while you try on pants at Sears?" I was aghast at his replies being that we are divorced and there are too many decisions I no longer have any say in. My ex told me I was too overly protective and that I needed to "allow my son to gain independence". I simply then stated "I wish someone would have been 'too protective' last week." What is too protective and what is not protective enough whenever it's simply too late? This story has struck something deep inside of me and hasn't changed my thoughts, I'll forever be too protective. How many times have I told my son to clean his room before he got the message? I intend to tell him how to be safe and why it's so important to not ever be in public alone and/or to always be aware that anyone asking him to go somewhere with him is going to cause him harm..no if's and's or but's and he's never to go with anyone. It's called education..vigilence....giving your child information....and providing protection. I know Carlie's family will forever ask themselves why...why didn't someone say it was a bad idea for her to walk alone. Why...why.... No it's NOT their fault someone is evil, it's not their fault that some people in this world is ugly enough to do such a thing, but who's fault is it that she was alone? Who could have changed that one fact very simply by being "over protective"?

After ranting and raving at my ex-husband about the importance of all of this where my son is concerned he finally admitted he was too quick to the draw and after hearing everything I had to say he fully agreed with me and would approach things differently. I suppose it's a matter of being insistent and demanding and perhaps a tad bit of a nag ....but either way it's only because I love my son and realize what my grandmother always said is very true. But there for the grace of god go I.

Carlie's story touched me, my son would have been Karly Lynn had he been a girl. I was going to name a girl after my best friend in Canada..Carla.

9:45 p.m. ::
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